Aldermen consider TIF, Cap loan

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, August 2, 2017

The Poplarville Board of Aldermen took steps Tuesday to move forward with a Tax Increment Financing redevelopment plan that would help fund what is now being called the College Square Retail Center project.
The Board held a public hearing Tuesday to discuss compliance of the TIF plan with the Poplarville Planning Commission. No public comments were made and the Board closed the hearing.
Next, the Board adopted the TIF plan as approved by the Poplarville Planning Commission on July 27.
Lastly, it set a public hearing for August 15 at 5 p.m. for the public to make comments on a proposal to use the TIF plan for redevelopment of College Square Retail Center. A copy of the plan will be available at City Hall for public review.
A public hearing still needs to be set with the Pearl River County Board of Supervisors about the project.
In other matters, the Board discussed applying for a loan under the Mississippi Cap program through the Mississippi Development Authority to fund the construction of a new Public Works Facility.
Tim Mood, an MDA representative, spoke to the Board about the viability of the city applying for the loan.
Mood said the project would likely qualify under the program’s requirements, and if approved, would either qualify for a two percent, tax-exempt interest rate or a taxable rate at three percent.
The project could also qualify for up to a 20-year loan, he said. Mood added that the application process typically has a turnaround timeframe of about 45 days.
Although the Board took no action on the Cap loan, it voted unanimously to rescind two Board orders taken at the July 5 meeting regarding the financing of the project through a loan from Bank Plus.
The Board further voted to engage the law firm Butler-Snow, LLP to complete any funding requirements for the project.
In other matters, the Board discussed necessary repairs to the Cumberland Street well.
Poplarville Public Works Superintendent Sam Hale said the well is currently working up to 18 hours a day, costing the city a significant amount in utility costs. He proposed utilizing water services provided by the Pearl River County Utility Authority.
Depending on the severity of the repairs, Hale said it could cost between $15,000 and $70,000 to fix the problem.
No action was taken on the matter, but the Board planned to incorporate the expense into next year’s budget.
In code enforcement matters, the city’s new Code Enforcement Officer Kolby Davis updated the Board on the status of several properties.
In regard to a vacant property on Roy Street, Davis said the property is being cleaned and is expected to be in compliance with city ordinances by the weekend.
Davis said he is still trying to locate the owner of the property located at 818 Julia Street, which is allegedly vacant and littered with debris after a fire.
Davis is also pursing resolution on the following properties: 477 Highway 26 East, 410 Larkin Smith Road, 710 South Main Street, 207 Mimosa Street, 205 Sweet Gum Street and 110 Maple Street.
More information from Tuesday’s Board meeting will be published in tomorrow’s edition of the Item.

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About Julia Arenstam

Staff Writer

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